T Nation

5x5, or 5x10 With Same Weight?


Hi, if i can lift 220lbs BP lets say for 5 max, would it be best if i ramp up the weight and finish off with 220lbs x 5 on the last set?

Or.. would it also be good for me to drop the weight a bit, and go for 10 on the first 1 or 2 sets with 40s rest, then let fatigue kick in so i only get about 5 on the last set?

what would be most effective in adding mass? 5x5 with big rests? or 5x10 with little rest. Is muscle fatigue what causes growth? I understand DC uses this.



It depends, although CT outlined that doing sets of 10 will induce more hypertrophy than sets of 5. Sets of 5 are more geared towards strength gains.


I would rather ramp up to my heaviest weight. In my mind if you can handle 220x5 but you try to fatigue your muscle with sets of 10 before hand and can only manage say 205x5 have you given yourself much reason to grow?

I'm not sure you quite understand DC if you are saying they use fatigue to cause growth, it's the progessively heavier poundages and food that cause growth.


Ahh right, im eating over 4500 calories a day, so i should be getting enough food.

Thing is, i would rather not ramp up, as i want to superset and that takes time, saying that, i possibly could, i just need to play it all ahead.

If DC uses progressivly heavier weights, do they change the weights in the 20seconds they have a breather?

Ill do the 5x5 thing, i think, i want to work myself hard though and possible do some leg work while im resting from a set. E.g BP then leg raise then 1 minute rest...




If you are considering doing DC or using some of Dante's principles, you should do some more reading on his site. There is a decent thread here too if you can cut through the places where people are posting incorrect information.


I think 3X10 or 5X10 is better for size as long as you're using the same weight throughout. If you're using 5X5 to build strength, then the last set should be a 3-5RM.

But it might just depend on what your body responds to. If you've never done 10 set, low rep workouts and have already done 5X5 workouts you might want to try something different.


I've had good results using your approach there. Staying in the rep failure zone of 5-10 I used for hypertropy ...with short rest periods .. failing at around the 5 rep range near the last couple sets. I was using 7 sets though and trying to stay under 50 total reps ...if I went over I added weight. I think the key for hypertrophy isn't so much the load RM per sey, but the rest interval along with that load RM. 5 reps with your 10 RM when you're fatigued can be just as straining as 10 reps with your 10 RM.

In all forms of hypertrophy, you are looking for fatigue some way or another to release those metabolic processes.

I don't think it matters much, 5 reps, 10 reps, or repping in between due to fatigue. I think fatigue is what makes the difference within a reasonable failure range of course, for significant hypertrophy.